Werner Herzog's 'delightful' reading of Go the F**k to Sleep

Does the legendary director charm with his rendition of the controversial children's book phenomenon?

Werner Herzog
(Image credit: Paul Hawthorne/Getty Images)

The video: With its endearing illustrations, it looks a standard, sweet bedtime story. But standard and sweet Go the F**k to Sleep is not. The book by Adam Mansbach, ostensibly an R-rated version of the children's classic Goodnight Moon, became a publishing phenom when a pirated copy of the PDF went viral last month. The book shot to number one on Amazon and is already on its fifth printing, with 400,000 copies sold. The movie rights have been optioned, and none other than Samuel L. Jackson recorded the official audiobook. Not bad for a book born out of a Facebook post: "After a particularly difficult time putting my 2-year-old daughter Vivien to bed," says Mansbach, as quoted by Reuters, "I posted on Facebook... 'Be on the lookout for my forthcoming children's book, Go the Fuck to Sleep." To celebrate the book's official release Tuesday, the New York Public Library hosted a launch event, and enlisted acclaimed film director Werner Herzog to read it (see video below):

The reaction: The book itself is already "really funny," says Adam Martin at The Atlantic Wire. But Herzog's rendition is even funnier. Yes, the director's interpretation "makes my heart leap," says Josh Wolford at WebProNews. "It's a delight." But not everyone will be as enamored. The Christian organization Family First has officially protested the book, warning that some kids may think it's for them because it "looks like a children's story." The offensive language should raise concerns of "verbal abuse." Watch the clip:

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